Say hello to the round fellow with a beard. We start at Huawei's Ultra Broadband Forum, Hangzhou, October18-19, which will feature top executives from telcos around the world. Then to Berlin for Adtran's Press and Analyst event October 23, the Broadband Forum's Access Summit October 24, and the Informa Broadband World Forum on the 25th and 26th.

The Broadband Forum's Las Vegas Access Summit will be on the 29th followed by Calix Connections. Home to New York for a while, then I hope to attend Huawei's London Mobile Broadband Forum on Nov 15 & 16. The 2016 Huawei Mobile in Tokyo was one of the two best mobile events of the year. 

These are all strong events, worth the cost and travel. I'd love to share a coffee or a drink with readers and capture your news with Jennie's camera.

Huawei's Ultra Broadband Forum in Hangzhou will feature top executives from half a dozen of the world's most innovative telcos. Huawei is now larger than Ericsson and Nokia combined; They bring it all to their events, making them special. Huawei brings their top experts, who have been very open about what they are developing and what's coming. It's working well for them, as you can tell from the quality of the reporting that results. We hope to spend a few days before in Shanghai, again delighted to meet readers.

Adtran's press and analyst events are very valuable because they open the kimono and give a very strong preview of what will be. Adtran comes from Werner von Braun's town, Huntsville Alabama, and until recently seemed to be treating information like military secrets. Tom Stanton has changed that; they now answer just about any reasonable question while occasionally hiding the secret sauce. (What is the low cost laser breakthrough for the NG-PON2?) Not long ago, nearly all Adtran's customers were U.S. telcos. They are now supplying DSLAMs to Deutsche Telekom and nbn Australia and have some major cable customers to announce.

Tom Starr of AT&T and Trevor Linney of BT headline the Broadband Forum on October 24th. Decades ago, Tom was a founder of the Forum, first known as the ADSL Forum and continues to lead in standards.  Trevor leads the world's largest deployment and has the most reliable data. I've been briefed on what Rami Verbin of Sckipio will be announcing and it's exciting.

The Informa BBWF on the 25th and 26th is the largest "broadband" event of the year. The program will be the strongest in several years, featuring CTO Enrico Blanco of Telefonica and several of his peers. Informa events are "pay to play," requiring most companies to take sponsorships if they want to speak. Paying as much as $90,000 for a 30 minute slot, most speakers believe they are entitled to give a predictable sales pitch rather than addressing important industry issues. Many reporters avoid the speeches, therefore, instead scheduling appointments with the most interesting people there. I'll be doing a special issue the week before the show, picking out the likely highlights.    

Then off to a second Broadband Forum Base event, in Las Vegas on the 29th, The speaker list is being finalized, but I'll probably be on the program. It's organized the day before Calix's event, which will have a very large gathering of U.S. and Canadian telcos. Calix, like Adtran, is very open about their products so the event is a good chance to learn. 

Huawei's Tokyo Mobile event in 2016 was extraordinary. The Huawei folks provided serious insight and I spoke with the CTO or similar from carriers serving over two billion customers. (When you start with China Mobile, Vodafone, and NTT, the count rises quickly. In the ten months since, I don't think there's only been development in mobile that wasn't foreshadowed in Tokyo. Perhaps my most interesting discussion was with Safaricom about how to increase wireless capacity in Africa. Stanford Professor Paulraj told me in 2014 that Massive MIMO will enable a 10X or higher improvement in capacity where there are few landlines. Wireless caps in affordable plans in most of Africa are 2-10 gigabytes, not enough to watch even an hour od decent video a day. Massive MIMO and other advances are making caps of 50-150 gigabytes practical. Jennie paid 20 Euro ($24) in Paris for a mobile plan with a true 100 gigabyte cap this spring. 

Always happy to have a coffee or a drink with readers when we're in the same city.

Adtran, ASSIA, Calix, Huawei, and the Summit have paid my expenses to events this year. Thank you. None have asked for any inappropriate reporting in return, but they do have the opportunity to show off their best at events. That makes a difference: I wouldn't haven't written about Huawei's world's first 8 antenna MIMO deployment if I hadn't noticed a quiet demo at Huawei's event. Companies without a budget to cover this reporter's travel expenses, please reach out to me directly. Skype doesn't cost anything. Just remember I'm looking for news that goes beyond the usual press release stuff.